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The Ex-Gay Story in the Pop Music World
By Roberto Marchesini NARTH International Representative - NARTH
Italy's "Festival di San Remo," the most important musical happening in my country which is seen on T.V. by millions of Italians, became the unlikely platform this year for a powerful ex-gay testimony. The singer, Giuseppe Povia, winner of the festival in 2006, presented a song entitled, "Luca Era Gay" (Luca was once gay) -- SEE VIDEO HERE The title of his song, implying that some gays can change to heterosexuality, was sufficient to destabilize the Italian gay movement. Gay activists threatened to block the festival, and Europarlimentary member Vittorio Agnoletto asked for a European resolution to stop Povia from peforming the song. Povia, himself, received death threats. The gay association "Everyone" denounced Povia to the Procura of the Republic for alleged "homophobia." These efforts failing, gay activists then asked the Festival organizers to "counterbalance" Povia with a song by a gay singer, about "the perfection of homosexual love." That effort too, failed.
Finally, on February 17th., Povia sang his song on the first evening of the Festival. "Luca Era Gay" recounts the transformation of a man named Luca from the gay lifestyle. Without the help of psychologists and psychiatrists, he digs deep within himself to understand the sources of his homosexual attractions. An emotionally disconnected, detached father and a smothering mother, he says, created confusion about his sexual identity: "I looked for men who would be my father, I went with men not to betray my mother." The song also alludes to a superficiality in homosexual relationships. He says, "between love and deceit, often we betrayed each other."
The song ends with this verse: "This is my story, only my story. No disease. No healing. Dear dad, I forgive you even if you didn't come back. Mum, I often think of you, I love you and sometimes I still bear your reflection, but now I am a father and I am in love with the only woman I have ever loved." The music, a soft rap with dramatic tunes, carries a direct and honest text while never judging homosexually oriented people for their own personal lifestyle choices.
Before Povia's song was aired, the Italian comedian Roberto Benigni presented a twenty-minute show in which he condemned Povia, saying that homosexuality isn't a sin and that gays have been persecuted historically "because they love someone." He then read an excerpt from Oscar Wilde's "De Profundis."
After Povia's song, contrary to all custom, the conductor gave the microphone to Franco Grillini, former parliamentary member and former president of ARCI gay, the foremost gay association in Italy. Grillini said he had received a cellphone message from a friend (although all celphones were supposed to be turned off during the festival...), who had cried when he had just heard Benigni reading "De Profundis," because it brought to mind his partner who had died of AIDS. Grillini concluded by saying that Povia must learn what gay love is.
Then, the unforseeable happened: people in the theater started to hiss at Grillini (in Italy, hissing is like booing)! The crowd's sympathy was with Povia, not with the gay activist.
Povia's song went on to the finals and Saturday night, won second place in the San Remo Festival, while outside the theatre, gay activists continued to protest against him. Povia himself said: "I too had a gay phase--it lasted seven months and then I got over it."
The popularity of "Luca Era Gay" has given courage and dignity to the ex-homosexual community in Italy, who, until now, have been thoroughly intimidated by gay activists. The text's real-life insights regarding the ex-gay experience are undeniable.
LUCA WAS GAY - translated from Italian lyrics of popular ex-gay song:
Luca was gayand now he's dating her luca talks honestly luca says I'm a different man luca says before telling you about my sexual change I want to say even if I do believe in God I don't recognize myself in what others think about this topic even if they have different opinions I didn't consult psychologists and psychiatrists priest or scientist I went in my past I dug in my past and I found out a lot of things about myself My mother loved me too much a love that became obsession so convinced about her beliefs I couldn't breathe because of her attentions My father didn't take any decision and I couldn't talk to him He was always away, working I thought he wasn't even real So my mom decided to divorce I was 12, I didn't understand much My father said "It's the right thing to do"and after sometime he started to drink Mom talked bad about dad she said "Don't get married, for god sake!" she was jealous, morbid, of my female friends and my identity was more and more confused Luca was gayand now he's dating her luca talks honestlyluca says I'm a different man Luca was gay and now he's dating her luca talks honestly luca says I'm a different man Im a different man but back then I was looking for answers I was ashamed and I looked for them secretly They said to me it was natural but I was studying Freud and I thought it wasn't so Then I grow up, but I didn't know what happiness meant an older man make me tremble so I found out I was a homosexual with him there were no inhibition there was courting and I though it was love with him I was able to be myself then it was like a sex-competition for who was making best sex and I felt guilty sooner or later they're gonna catch him but if the evidences disappear he will be absolved I was looking for my father I had sex with men so I wouldn't betray my mother Luca was gay and now he's dating her luca talks honestly luca says I'm a different man Luca was gay and now he's dating her luca talks honestly luca says I'm a different man luca says for 4 years I dated a man it was love and lies, we often cheated on each other I was still looking for my truth and endless love then during a party, between all those people I met her who didn't really fit inS he listened to me, she understood me, she stripped me I just remember that the day after I missed her this is my story just my story no illness no treatment dear dad I forgive you even if you've never come back mom I often think about you I love you and I see your reflection in me but now I'm a father and I'm in love with the only woman I've ever loved Luca was gay and now he's dating her luca talks honestly luca says I'm a different man Luca was gay and now he's dating her luca talks honestlyl uca says I'm a different man
Versions of the video on YouTube have been watched over 3 million times!